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USDA Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

By Chris Zoller, Ohio State University Extension Educator, ANR, Tuscarawas County and Mike Estadt, Extension Educator, ANR, Pickaway County

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) is part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, and other USDA authorities to provide $16 billion in support to farmers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The program is available to all farmers, regardless of size, who suffered an eligible loss. Included in the program is $3 billion that will go toward purchases of commodities for distribution by food banks and faith-based programs through the Farmers to Families Food Box Program. USDA announced $1.2 billion in contracts for that program.

CFAP will provide direct support based on actual losses where markets & supply chains have been impacted.  The program is also designed to assist farmers with additional adjustment and marketing costs from lost demand and short-term oversupply for the 2020 marketing year caused by COVID-19.… Continue reading

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New Clean Water Act interpretations make waves

By Ellen Essman, Ohio Law Blog, Agricultural & Resource Law Program at The Ohio State University

Even with most of the country shut down, the U.S. EPA and the Supreme Court recently released an important rulemaking and a decision, respectively, regarding how parts of the Clean Water Act will be interpreted going forward. On April 21, 2020, the EPA and the Department of the Army published the Trump administration’s final rule on the definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) under the Clean Water Act (CWA). Then, on April 23, the Supreme Court released its long awaited opinion determining whether or not pollutants from a point source, which are released and then carried by groundwater into a navigable water, must be permitted under the CWA.

 

Trump’s new WOTUS

If you recall, we explained this final rule in January when the draft version was released. Basically, the Trump administration wanted to repeal and replace the Obama administration’s 2015 WOTUS rule because the administration felt that it was overreaching in the waters it protected.… Continue reading

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Food bloopers

By Shelly Detwiler, berry farmer and nutritionist

bloop·er /ˈblo͞opər/ Noun; an embarrassing error.

Thursday mornings at my church, a class of primarily Japanese women meet to learn English. They are sponges for American culture, food and words. Classes are filled with laughter as words get mixed up, Americanisms are learned, and bonds are created. I had been planning a class about All-American foods when the pandemic hit. To get my mind off the germs, I took matters in my own hands and decided to make Tasty Tuesday All-American Favorites. Tasty Tuesday would feature a how-to video of a recipe. First up: Easy Crockpot Roast Beef (a.k.a. Pot Roast). I made cue cards of vocabulary words such as ground beef, ground sirloin, ground round and ground chuck. My husband Paul filmed as I began talking about cuts of beef using the great interactive resources on www.brobbq.com. First, the round and then “moving on to the chicken, I mean chuck!” I let out a howl of laughter, the camera bobbed as Paul snickered and we moved right along.… Continue reading

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Farmers and 1099 filers might qualify for new COVID-19 unemployment benefits program

By Peggy Kirk Hall, director of agricultural law, Ohio State University Agricultural and Resource Law Program

Farmers aren’t traditionally eligible for unemployment benefits, but that won’t be the case when Ohio’s newest unemployment program opens. We’ve been keeping an eye out for the opening of the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program, which will provide unemployment benefits to persons affected by COVID-19. The program is targeted to persons who are not eligible for regular unemployment benefits, such as self-employed and 1099 filers. PUA is yet another economic assistance program generated by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act recently passed by Congress.

PUA will provide regular unemployment benefit amounts to qualifying individuals, plus an additional $600 per week for the period of March 29 to July 25, 2020. Qualification doesn’t include a minimum income requirement, but a person must not be eligible for Ohio’s regular unemployment benefits and must not be currently receiving vacation, sick or other paid leave.… Continue reading

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Big as all outdoors

By Dan Armitage, host of Buckeye Sportsman, Ohio’s longest running outdoor radio show

As I write this in mid-April I see a glimmer of light way down the gun barrel after noting that Governor DeWine this week did not extend our stay-at-home orders past the first of this month. We’ll all know more by the time you read this, but hopes are for a gradual return to a new norm in life at home, work and in the outdoors. Hopes also hang on the possibility that some of the lessons learned and practices engaged in will carry over and allow us to derive something positive from these weeks of isolation. Time will tell.

Meanwhile, I hope you all are weathering these times well and enjoying what finally feels like spring. When I am done here I head to our turkey hunting grounds, where wife Maria and I planted our pop-up hunting blind back on Easter Sunday in anticipation of the opener of the gobbler season now underway.… Continue reading

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Burndown and residual herbicide issues

By Mark Loux, Ohio State University Extension

Depending upon where you are in the state, it’s possible right now to be experiencing delays in getting anything done, progress in planting but delays in herbicide application, weather too dry to activate residual herbicides, and/or reduced burndown herbicide effectiveness on big weeds due to cold weather — what’s become a typical Ohio spring. Some information relative to questions that OSU Extension educators have passed on to us:

1. Residual herbicides and rainfall. Residual herbicides do vary in the relative amounts of rain needed for “activation,” or adequate movement into the soil to reach germinating seeds. Most growers are applying mixtures or premixes of several products, so we’re not sure these diiferences are as important as the overriding principle here. Residual herbicide treatments need to receive a half to one inch of rain within a week or so after tillage or an effective burndown treatment, to control weeds that can will start to emerge at that time.… Continue reading

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Set yourself up for grazing success

By Rory Lewandowski, Ohio State University Extension Educator Wayne County

Like any resource, pastures respond to management. Grazing offers economic benefits as compared to producing and feeding stored forages as livestock harvest the forage directly. Capture the benefits of grazing and set yourself up for success by using the 4-Rs to manage pastures. We typically hear of the 4-Rs in relationship to water quality and fertilizer management, but pasture management has its own set of 4-Rs. Those 4-Rs stand for the grazing principles of Right beginning grazing height, Remove/Reduce seed heads, Residual leaf area and Rest period.

During the spring flush, the goal is to remove only the top couple of inches of the plant, and then quickly move on. Do not begin to graze pastures too soon. There is a positive correlation between pasture plant height, density, and livestock intake. Animal intake is directly correlated with animal performance. The goal is to make sure that grazing livestock get a full mouthful of forage with every bite they take.… Continue reading

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Ohio beekeeping

By Brianna Gwirtz, OCJ field reporter

Perhaps one of the most significant and overlooked species of farmed livestock in Ohio is the honeybee. Much like any other livestock species, honeybees require food, water, protection from the elements, parasite management and general health care. At the same time, these vital “livestock” are essential to the production of many fruit and vegetable crops in Ohio.

Ohio has a long history in the beekeeping industry. Two notable members of beekeeping history called Ohio their home. Amos Root, inventor of a beehive that allowed apiarists to harvest honey without destroying the hive, was from Medina. His business still exists there today. L.L. Langstroth, who lived in Oxford and Dayton for periods of his life, invented the Langstroth hive, a vertical hive that remains extremely popular.

Today career apiarists have been replaced by hobbyists and sideliners as the art of beekeeping has been more commercialized. Ron Zickefoose , owner of Grandpa’s Farm, a 100-colony apiary in Creston has been beekeeping for over 20 years.… Continue reading

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Building a resilient farm

By Chris Zoller, Ohio State University Extension Educator, ANR, Tuscarawas County

The word “resilience” is used often in the agricultural press. What does this mean? Merriam-Webster defines resilience as: The capability of a strained body to recover its size and shape after deformation caused especially by compressive stress.
An ability to recover from or adjust to misfortune or change.

We often see resilience used in agriculture when discussing climate and weather. There is documented evidence of weather changes that have impacted agriculture, and farmers have done their best to adapt to these changes. Examples include building soil health, managed grazing, the use of cover crops, water management strategies, technology adoption, and more.

Resilience can also be used when discussing the economics of agriculture and the resulting effects. It is no surprise to anyone in agriculture that people are strained, are experiencing stress, and are trying to adjust to new and different ways of operating.… Continue reading

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Managing head scab with fungicides Q&A

By Pierce Paul, Ohio State University Extension

Most of the wheat in the northern half of the state is still between Feekes growth stage 8 (early flag leaf emergence) and 9 (full flag leaf emergence), but in the southern half of the state, wheat is much further along. Malting barley is even further along than wheat, and will soon be approaching the heading growth stage. Understandably, given the wet weather we have had so far this season, folks are asking questions about head scab and vomitoxin. Based on some of the questions I have been asked over the years, here are a few things to remember and consider as you make your head scab management decision.

Q: What should I apply for head scab and vomitoxin control?

A: Prosaro, Caramba, or Miravis Ace. In my experience, they are just as effective when applied at the correct growth stage.

Q: What is the correct growth stage for applying a fungicide to control vomitoxin and head scab?… Continue reading

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Corteva announces Brevant to replace Mycogen brand

Corteva Agriscience announced the launch of a brand-new seed brand for the U.S.

Brevant seeds is a bold, high-performance corn and soybean brand that is exclusive to retail in the Midwest and Eastern Corn Belt. Brevant will replace Mycogen Seeds as the primary retail seed brand from Corteva.

“To retailers and their customers, Brevant brings a completely new and unique opportunity. It’s people and it’s proven products from an organization that truly cares about your individual success,” said Jason Dodd, general manager for Brevant. “Having access to this germplasm pool for retail has never been possible broadly in the past. The genetic diversity that is now available is a great new advantage.”

Brevant will offer more than 200 corn hybrids and soybean varieties with the latest trait technology solutions.

“Brevant is rooted in more than a century of U.S. ag experience, science and support, and we’ve built Brevant for farmers who prefer the service and local expertise the retailer brings to their farm,” said Mike Lozier, marketing leader for Brevant.… Continue reading

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Developing elite genetics

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff

Sixteen years ago, this month, when Reid Rice was walking across the stage as a graduate from high school in Wauseon, Ohio, he never would have guessed just a decade later, he would be a research scientist and plant breeder for Corteva Agriscience at a location, just a few miles south of their family farm. For the past six years, Rice has been leading soybean research for Corteva (formerly DuPont Pioneer) at their research center just north of Napoleon, Ohio.

“The breeding objective at the Napoleon research center is focused on soybeans with a relative maturity of 2.6 to 3.9 for the target production environment (TPE) found in Ohio, Southeast Michigan, and Northeast Indiana,” Rice said. “We have done a lot of work in the past on agronomic traits, herbicide resistance, and high oils like the Plenish soybeans.”

While developing elite varieties that can maximize a farmer’s yield is the first priority, Rice said that an important component of that is the screening for protection from yield robing disease, such as soybean cyst nematode (SCN), Phytophthora sojae, brown stem rot, White Mold, and sudden death syndrome (SDS).

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CFAES ag weather system near-surface soil temperatures

By Aaron Wilson, Greg LaBarge, CPAg/CCA, Elizabeth Hawkins, Sam Custer, Ohio State University Extension

With the calendar now turning to mid-May and much warmer weather expected ahead, this will be the last edition of this year’s soil temperature series in the C.O.R.N. Newsletter. Thanks especially to Elizabeth Hawkins and Sam Custer for persistently supplying daily soil temperatures records from their locations this spring.

Figure 1 shows that two- and four-inch soil temperatures cooled once again after spending the first part of May recovering from April’s chill. Air temperatures were 8 to 12 degrees F below average for the week which sent soil temperatures in the wrong direction. Generally, average soil temperatures are starting this week in the mid to upper 40s across northern Ohio (Northwestern, North Central, and Wooster) and in the mid-50s across the south (Piketon and Western). With a significant warm-up anticipated this weekend, with high temperatures into the 70s across the state, soil temperatures should respond nicely.… Continue reading

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Ohio soybean disease monitoring

By Carol Brown, United Soybean Board database communications

Ohio farmers can be grateful that Anne Dorrance is working on their behalf. The soybean research and extension pathologist at Ohio State University has been monitoring soybeans across the state for the appearance of diseases including frogeye leaf spot in addition to her teaching and administrative requirements.

With funding support from the Ohio Soybean Council, she is monitoring for diseases and studying ways to mitigate them.

Anne Dorrance OSU Soybean Researcher Field Leader
Dr. Anne Dorrance, OSU Plant Pathologist

“It is my commitment to the Council to keep on top of any disease that might come into the state,” Dorrance said. “Their funding has enabled me to monitor for all diseases and their potential yield losses, and also run the experiments to detect when there is fungicide resistance in the state.”

Dorrance is involved with many research projects in the state and the Midwest, and this project allows her and her students to move with the surge when a plant disease emerges and to shift resources quickly within the season.

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Paulding County fair closes gates for 2020

Another fair in Ohio’s 94-fair county and independent fair lineup has pulled the plug on it’s 2020 event.

West Bend News reported that the Paulding County Fair board, county commissioners, and health department made a mutual decision to not hold the 2020 fair in a virtual meeting Monday. Paulding is the first fair on the 2020 fair season schedule. It was scheduled to begin June 15.

“It was decided by all parties that for the safety and well-being of the Paulding County residents, the 2020 Paulding County Fair cannot happen this year,” the report said.

The fair board is exploring the possibility of holding a virtual add-on-style livestock auction to support their youth exhibitors. The report did note that the board has packers coordinated for all market animals, should the youth decide to utilize that market. The board hopes to host a fun day in the fall for 4-H and FFA youth exhibitors.… Continue reading

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May 12 USDA numbers a neutral surprise

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Plenty of numbers today.

Old corn exports were increased 50 million bushels, big surprise, while corn for ethanol was cut 100 million bushels, also a surprise. Old crop soybean exports were cut 100 million bushels, while crush was unchanged.

Shortly after the USDA report was released, corn was unchanged, soybeans down 2 cents, and wheat down 7 cents. Just before the noon report, grains were all lower with corn down 3 cents, soybeans down 2 cents, while wheat was down 5 cents.

Ahead of the report, many had expected it to be neutral to bearish report for grains. Old crop corn demand was expected to drop 150 million to 200 million bushels due to lower exports and lower corn for ethanol. Old crop soybean demand was expected to drop 50 million to 100 million bushels from lower exports.

This report had the first supply and demand tables for 2020-2021 grains.… Continue reading

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Communicating in crisis: Your relationship with ag retailers webinar, Thursday, May 14

COVID-19 has profoundly affected every aspect of daily life, including the critical supply chain from retailer to farmer. The Ohio Soybean Council (OSC) and soybean checkoff, in partnership with the Ohio AgriBusiness Association (OABA), is presenting the webinar Communicating in crisis: Your relationship with ag retailers, Thursday, May 14 at 11:00 a.m.

This free webinar will feature three ag retail representatives sharing how their companies are balancing the need to ensure safety with the reality of growing our nation’s food.

Jedd Bookman, Safety & Risk Coordinator, Sunrise Cooperative; Rodney Gilliland, Vice President of Sales and Supply, Morral Companies; and Bill Wallbrown, CEO, Deerfield Ag Service will discuss the following topics:

  • How are retailers adapting to the challenges of COVID-19?
  • What steps are retailers taking to reduce risk for their employees and their customers?
  • What are the best practices for farmers when working with retailers?

Register now at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5094436900911010061

We hope you will join us for this important and informative discussion presented by the Ohio Soybean Council and Checkoff and the Ohio AgriBusiness Association. 

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Ohio’s Country Journal & Ohio Ag Net Podcast |Ep. 154 | Winter in May

This week during the quarantine chronicles, we have Matt, Kolt, and Dusty host Adam Sharp from the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation while he talks about their response to COVID-19. Interviews by Matt this week include Charlie Kail, Mark Loux, and Sam Custer. We wrapped up the Ohio FFA Celebration last week, and our fantastic Student Reporters talked with National FFA President, Kolsen McCoy after his keynote speech.… Continue reading

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